INFOGRAPHIC: Bechdel Test and Top Grossing films of 2013


A new infographic surfacing on the internet seems to indicate that films that pass the Bechdel Test, an internet test that measures presence of women in cinema, have collectively drawn larger box office totals this year than films that have not passed the test.

Though the infographic denotes that several passing films are nebulous claims, it does beg the question whether the growing awareness of the disproportionate presence and roles of women in Hollywood films are effecting more people’s choices in which films to see. Of course it’s probably more likely a coincidence, but it does give hope that there could be a shifting trend in the taste of the film-going audience.

In November 2013, the film ratings system in Sweden included the Bechdel test as part of their revamped system (Click here for that story). Meaning that all movies will bear the scrutiny of gender bias before they reach theatres and will denote whether they have passed the test.

Note that the infographic does not include Gravity in either tally, a film that many claim to be one of the best films of the year. The creators of the graphic made specific mention that the film fails the test based on the strict criteria of the test, but that the film only has two main cast members (the rest are nameless, faceless or disembodied voices), one of whom, Sandra Bullock, is female and features alone for the majority of the film. So while it doesn’t get a pass, it does get an exception and doesn’t change the final verdict of infographic.

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